Happy and glowing one minute, ready to rip someone's head off the next, followed by an emotional wreck on the floor crying after that. Sound familiar?
There are so many changes in the hormones in your body when you are pregnant, it can leave you feeling like you're going crazy!
These changes are mostly from the increases in your hormones and are happening to create the best environment for your baby to develop and to prepare your body for labour and breastfeeding.
The 3 main hormones during pregnancy are:
Progesterone - It's job is to hold in place the lining of the uterus. If your body detects that a conception took place, the lining needs to be maintained so it's a really important hormone! It's also a powerful anti anxiety, anti-depressant, fat burner and a diuretic.
Relaxin - It's a protein hormone and as it's name suggests it relaxes the soft tissue especially the ligaments in your body in preparation for birth. It also mediates the rise in cardiac output, increased renal blood flow and softens your pubic symphysis (the thick ligament in between your pubic bones at the front)
These are naturally occurring hormones in the body when you aren't pregnant but they increase during pregnancy especially progesterone which can increase up to 100 times more than your usual levels.
Other responses to the increase in hormones are:
- Softening of the ligaments around your pelvis to allow for the delivery of your baby. The ligaments relax in all of your body which does put you at risk of having more movement in your joints and potentially in pain.
- Relaxed blood vessels causing varicose veins and the painful haemorrhoids.
- Slowing of your digestive system, causing morning sickness, heartburn and constipation. Add to the growing size of your baby and your stomach having less room can leave you feeling very uncomfortable at times.
- Breast enlargement causing back pain as it is more difficult to maintain a good posture.
These are all normal changes and you are not alone feeling like you are going crazy. So next time you go in circles wondering what is happening to your body remember this article.
Thankfully the happy hormones endorphins also increase during pregnancy making all of the above a little easier to cope with. Take some time to be mindful of your thoughts and feelings and know that you aren't alone during this time.
Please comment below with any questions or symptoms you have been experiencing.
Dr Libby Weaver (2011) Rushing Women's Syndrome.